A new book omits a struggle over whether the corporation should broadcast the truth across Europe or turn the news into a weapon against Goebbels

If the period portrayed in the film Darkest Hour is the founding myth of the modern British state, it also provides a kind of mythic justification for the BBC – for pretty much everything. And we can listen to the BBC’s Ed Stourton weaving it again on Radio 4 this week’s Book of the Week, his own Auntie’s War.

It goes like this. The commitment to truth in the news led to huge respect, not just at home but across Europe. From a dull, preachy, rather puritanical radio station among so many, it became a beacon of hope.

Noel Newsome was sacked by the BBC at the end of the war and remains almost unmentioned in the official BBC histories

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